A loan of $450 helped to buy fertilizers, compost, pesticides and herbicides to cultivate 7,000 square meters of corn.

Pedro Antonio's story

Pedro is 58 years old and is married. He learned to work from his father; together with his two sisters and three brothers they used to work alongside their dad. As the eldest of the brothers he had to sacrifice his youth in order to help out, and started working at the age of 7.

He has always worked in agriculture. Currently, along with his wife, they not only grow plants but also raise and fatten livestock. They currently have a pair of oxen. Due to the low prices offered for their products, they have to look for a way to compensate, so they collect and sell firewood for another small source of income.

They buy their agricultural inputs in another community and bring them home in a truck that they pay for. Pedro's take on the price situation is that inputs are expensive and sales prices are down, but he knows that if he doesn't grow his crops he won't have any way to feed his family next year.

The loan that he requests from the Fundacion Campo is to buy fertilizers, compost, pesticides, and herbicides needed to cultivate 7,000 square meters of corn. With the investment he hopes to be able to sustain his family in the coming year.

He wants to form a cooperative association with other small farmers, so that they can have negotiating power when they sell their products. The buyers impose their prices on them and a large part of the profits ends up in the hands of middlemen, but they have to sell because they are in need. For this reason he thinks of a cooperative as an alternative.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Mary Berghaus

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